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Moving Cars to Australia
Private motor vehicles and motor bikes can be imported into Australia but there are many requirements and regulations to comply with. Generally there is no duty free or GST (Goods Services Tax) free concession so all will be subject to duty and/or GST. This is calculated on the value and with some high value luxury vehicles there is also an additional Luxury Car Tax. Once you have decided to export your vehicle to Australia you must meet the following criteria:
- The vehicle must have been owned and used by the applicant for a continuous period of at least 12 months.
- At the time the vehicle is imported, the applicant must be an Australian citizen, an Australian permanent resident or a person who has at least applied to become an Australian citizen or an Australian permanent resident.
- The applicant is of an age that entitles them to hold a licence or a permit to drive a road vehicle of that type.
- The applicant undertakes to comply with any requirements as to road safety that are imposed in respect of the vehicle by the administrator in Australia.
- The applicant has not imported another vehicle within the previous 12 months.
If you meet all of the above criteria you will then have to apply for a "Vehicle Import Approval".
There is also a small fee payable with the application. Approval must be granted prior to the shipping of your vehicle. Any vehicle shipped without an approval will be destroyed or returned to the point of origin at the owners expense. Non motorised caravans and trailers will also need an import approval although there is no duty or GST if owned and used for more than 12 months and you intend to take up permanent residence in Australia. Documents required with the "Vehicle Import Approval" application: photocopy of every page of your passport including all blank pages, itinerary of travel, purchase documents and registration documents in your name.
You may also be required to demonstrate your credentials as a genuine migrant by supplying at least three of the following:
- Letter from employer stating where you are working
- Rental/purchase agreement for property in Australia
- Opening of an Australian bank account
- Australian telephone/electricity accounts
- Australian tax file number
- Medicare card
- Enrolment of children in an Australian school
- Sale of New Zealand property/cancellation of rental
- Resignation from work in New Zealand
Once your vehicle arrives in Australia it must comply with the Australian Design Rules. Vehicles are tested to ensure they meet ADR rules. If they do not comply they are to be modified at the owners expense. Vehicles for use on Australian roads need to be registered as roadworthy with a State or Territory vehicle registration authority. For further information on importing vehicles into Australia read more here.